Brunswick Stew Advice

Going to give it a try this weekend, using some squirrel I shot a few months back among other things.

Here is my game plan... I'll be eyeballing all the quantities... Any feedback?

Pre-cook Meat:
• Pressure-cook about two pounds of squirrel with onions, celery and carrots.
o Pick the meat
o Retain the stock
• Smoke about two pounds of “country ribs” with a standard rub
o Shred/chop
• Purchase one bbq flavor rotisserie chicken from Publix
o Shred/chop

Then proceed to the stew:
1. Sweat one or two onions and some celery in butter and olive oil until soft
2. Add meat, squirrel stock, some cans of tomatoes*, and bbq sauce**
*To be determined, should I use canned whole tomatoes and smash/chop
them or just use canned diced tomatoes?
**I plan on using Mee Maw’s bbq sauce, which is a lot like Sonny’s regular.
Some recipes call for ketchup too, but I don’t want to use any ketchup.
3. Let cook on low for a couple hours
4. Add:
a. One bag of frozen corn
b. One bag of frozen corn (blended)
c. One bag of frozen limas
5. Let it cook for a little while longer



I know I'm cheating with the store bought chicken and frozen vegetables but cut me some slack...

Replies

  • Earnest T BassEarnest T Bass Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    I do not know how to cook it but I sure know how to eat it. My sister lives in Brunswick GA. and we all go out by I-95 and 17 to a place called The GA. Pig BBQ. Great Brunswick stew. Youres sounds like a winner .
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    I am well acquainted with the GA Pig and SE Georgia. Dad is from SE Georgia and I'm making the stew for his birthday. I'm tired of hearing him complain that he can't find any good Brunswick stew down here.
  • jakedgejakedge Posts: 1,302 Officer
    Squirrels? Holy crap, I probably kill over 100 a year after they ate the lead flashings off my vent pipes. Furry tailed rats. I'm looking forward to some input on Brunswick stew but it need not include squirrels. No problem with the frozen veggies if the freshies aren't available. Go with the diced maters.
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    But squirrels is goooood mmmm hmmm...

    (You've got to say that like the guy from Sling Blade for it to be funny.)
  • Fishin BennieFishin Bennie Posts: 130 Officer
    Theres a cookbook called Seasonal Florida a taste of North Fla life(google) has a pretty good recipe for Brunswick Squrriel stew.I use it a lot. By the way a great cookbook.All kinds of old timey recipes.
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    I'm underway here... shooting to get all the meat ready today and do the stew tomorrow.

    Here's the pork... couldn't find a butt small enough so opted for 2# of country ribs

    DSC_0077.jpg

    The rub is demarara sugar, kosher salt, chili powder and smoked paprika. I had to break out the mortar/pestle to make the salt and sugar get along with the spices better.

    DSC_0073.jpg

    As I type the pork has been sitting in the smoker for about 90 minutes, and I'll take it off after about 2 hours total. I don't want to cook it but just get some smoke onto it.

    And the squirrel is in the pressure cooker with onion, celery, carrot and S/P. This is going to make the broth, and cause my wife and Mom to eat something else.

    DSC_0079.jpg
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    Theres a cookbook called Seasonal Florida a taste of North Fla life(google) has a pretty good recipe for Brunswick Squrriel stew.I use it a lot. By the way a great cookbook.All kinds of old timey recipes.

    Pretty sure that's I FA DAT's cookbook.
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    Squirrel is finished; ended up with about a quart of stock. It's a bit light and I might end up adding chicken stock before it's all said and done.

    DSC_0073-1.jpg

    The pork needs a bit longer, I just checked it and it looks like it needs more smoke.
  • ruskinredneckruskinredneck Posts: 1,121 Officer
    This is the one I use (from Field and Stream):

    "BRUNSWICK STEW
    3-4 plump squirrels
    Flour to dredge
    Salt, black pepper
    Bacon Grease
    6 onions, chopped
    3 cups water
    2 large cans whole tomatoes
    Generous pinch thyme
    1 qt lima beans
    1 qt cut okra
    1 cup yellow corn
    1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
    Multiple dashes of Tobasco Sauce.
    Older squirrels that would be a bit tough to fry are perfect, this process will make them tender. Cut the squirrels for frying. Dredge them with the flour, salt, and pepper, and brown them nicely in bacon fat in an iron skillet (it is not desirable to do more than just brown them). If browning any young squirrels, keep them separate. Put the meat in a large pot, but leave out for now any young squirrel. After pouring off most of the grease from the skillet, add some of the water to the skillet and stir up all the drippings with a wisk. Add this and the other water, onions, one can of tomatoes, and thyme to the pot, and let this mixture simmer for an hour. Then add all remaining ingredients, including any young squirrel, to the stew *except the okra* and let simmer, covered, till the meat and vegetables are tender. Now as a final step add the okra and heat again to a simmer; it’ll be ready to serve after just a 10 minute or so final simmer.

    My first attempts at this stew were OK but not as good as I had been served. With the advice of my wife I finally realized I couldn’t skip the step of browning the squirrels. I had thought I could, since the simmering will tenderize the meat anyway, but there is something essential to the end product that is accomplished by browning and it cannot be skipped."
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    Well crud I missed the browning part... but probably all that step is doing is getting some good crusty bits on the bottom of the pan... the flour on the squirrels would thicken the stew up but I could get around that with a roux...

    What I'm going to do is instead of sweating the onion and celery in olive oil and butter tomorrow I'm going to use a real fatty smoked hog jowl to get some fat in the pan and a little crust on the bottom... then drop a little flour in there...

    I see your recipe doesn't have any bbq or bbq sauce... is that the Virginia version or something?

    I'm trying to channel Hinesville GA here, Dad always said that Brunswick stew was basically just everything that got trimmed off the bbq pit...
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    We're go for launch here...

    DSC_0073-2.jpg
  • ruskinredneckruskinredneck Posts: 1,121 Officer
    Well crud I missed the browning part... but probably all that step is doing is getting some good crusty bits on the bottom of the pan... the flour on the squirrels would thicken the stew up but I could get around that with a roux...

    What I'm going to do is instead of sweating the onion and celery in olive oil and butter tomorrow I'm going to use a real fatty smoked hog jowl to get some fat in the pan and a little crust on the bottom... then drop a little flour in there...

    I see your recipe doesn't have any bbq or bbq sauce... is that the Virginia version or something?

    I'm trying to channel Hinesville GA here, Dad always said that Brunswick stew was basically just everything that got trimmed off the bbq pit...

    Honestly, I don't know about the barbeque sauce. I just picked up hunting squirrels when I was a kid and always had some on hand. As much as I love them fried with gravy, I was looking for a somewhat healthier way to cook them. After trying a ton of Brunswick Stew recipes, the one posted is the one I liked the most...
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    5:30 update, it's doggone near supper time...

    I cooked down the jowl bacon (smoked hog jowl) with salt and pepper. That's the stuff in the foreground on the paper plate on that last picture. I used it instead of regular bacon because it's not so full of sugar/brine.

    DSC_0073-3.jpg

    Then sweated one diced vidalia onion and a few stalks of diced celery in the pork fat with some s/p, paprika and dry thyme.

    When those were soft, added in the squirrel stock, one can of those tomatoes, bbq sauce and pork, and then brought that to a boil.

    DSC_0074-2.jpg

    Turned it down to a simmer and let it roll for about an hour, then added the squirrel and chicken.

    After another hour (this was like 15 minutes ago) I added the corn and limas:

    DSC_0073-4.jpg

    I gotta tell you at this point is tasting pretty **** good...
  • ruskinredneckruskinredneck Posts: 1,121 Officer
    Looks **** good!
  • I FA DATI FA DAT Posts: 553 Officer
    Looks great Tom! Thanks for the step by step pictures. Like Ruskinredneck we fry the squirrels to get that brown candy.
    Theres a cookbook called Seasonal Florida a taste of North Fla life(google) has a pretty good recipe for Brunswick Squrriel stew.I use it a lot. By the way a great cookbook.All kinds of old timey recipes.

    Thanks Bennie. Been a while. Hope South Florida is treating you good.
  • BakerActedBakerActed Posts: 285 Deckhand
    Looks like mom's. Enjoy!
  • Lunch Money SurfLunch Money Surf Posts: 1,026 Officer
    Hey do I win a free hat for making the "front" page? :)
  • TerribleTedTerribleTed Posts: 105 Deckhand
    jakedge wrote: »
    Squirrels? Holy crap, I probably kill over 100 a year after they ate the lead flashings off my vent pipes. Furry tailed rats. I'm looking forward to some input on Brunswick stew but it need not include squirrels. No problem with the frozen veggies if the freshies aren't available. Go with the diced maters.



    Thats the main ingredient (squirrel) with out it its not Brunswick Stew.

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